Dr. Chaim Weiss z”l Killed in Vermont Plane Crash


candle-small6Updated, 1:43 p.m.: The wreckage of a small plane that crashed in Bennington, Vermont, last night was found on Whipstock Mountain around 9:15 a.m. today. The crash tragically took the life of 58-year-old Dr. Chaim Weiss of Spring Valley, NY, who was piloting the plane.

Investigators from the Bennington Police Department were en route to the crash site around 9:30 a.m., according to Bennington Police Chief Richard Gauthier.

Peters said the plane departed last night from Greenwood Lake Airport in Milford, N.J., for what was expected to be two-hour flight. He did not know what time the plane took off.

Witnesses in Vermont reported the crash just after 7 p.m. last night.

Peters said the airplane was registered to Sky Training, LLC., of West Milford, N.J.

A beacon that usually emits a circling light from the highest point on Whipstock Mountain behind the airport stopped working shortly before the reported crash, according to police. They said it is unclear if that may have played a role.

plane-crashThe Federal Aviation Administration will take over the investigation of the crash, but local police will continue to investigate the accident, Gauthier said.

Police had resumed searching for the plane that several witnesses said crashed near the William H. Morse airport.

Local and state authorities called off the search around 12:30 a.m. this morning, however, after unsuccessful attempts to find the plane with the assistance of a New York State Police helicopter.

Several eye witnesses reported seeing an airplane crash near the airport. Emergency personnel responded around 7:20 p.m. and set up a command post on Whipstock Road before relocating to the airport. Bennington Police Lt. Paul Doucette said one 911 call came from a female who said the plane circle four times before losing power. She said “it sounded like thunder” as the plane went down.

Police believe the plane may have been circling the airport trying to land the plane from the west side, rather than from the east. Such a move would be “nearly impossible,” according to police.

Further information about the niftar will be posted pending notification from the family.

Update, 1:43 p.m.:

The niftar, Dr. Chaim Weiss, told his family yesterday that he was going for a short flight. Police Chief Richard Gauthier said the family has related that they did not know why Dr. Weiss would have flown to Vermont.

The pilot’s errors included taking the wrong approach to the airport, in the dark and turning the wrong way, sending the plane into the mountain, Gauthier said.

He said investigators do not know how long Dr. Weiss has been flying or how much experience he had.

Dr. Weiss was the sole passenger aboard the four-seat Cessna 172 which was found wrapped around a tree.

The crash was on Whipstock Mountain in an area of dense vegetation, near an area known as “Guitar Patch,” for the distinctive pine tree-filled feature on the side of the mountain.

Dr. Weiss, of Charlotte Drive in Spring Valley, was a Clinical Psychologist. 

 {Bennington Banner/WPTZ.com/Matzav.com Newscenter}


  1. special man did a lot of good work behind the scenes for the families of kiryas yoel aside from a lot of probono work in monsey bd”e

  2. he did worked for many years in the kiryas joel school district & in the talmud torah of kiryas joel with his good heart he help many many.. yhei zicroi burich

  3. I can’t believe I am writing about my amazing colleague in this context. Last time I used words to talk about him on paper, it was in the form of a performance review. I wish I had taken the opportunity then to praise him to the extent that he was worthy of being praised. Chaim was a brilliant,insightful,and empathic clinician. Most of all, he was an incredible mench. What stands out the most about Chaim was that despite all of his abilities and accomplishments, he had no ego. He was incredibly humble. I don’t think he had a self-serving bone in his body. His untimely and unexpected ptira is surreal. My heart goes out to his wonderful family whom he was so invested in. This is truly a loss for klal yisroel.

  4. Baruch Dayan HaEmet

    My heart goes out to their entire family. I am very good friends with Mordechai and his wife – such a tradgedy.

  5. this is a terrible shock and loss. what a wonderful person. genuine, trust-worthy, kind, and caring, with an easy smile and always with a positive attitude. he will be sorely missed. i’m sorry i didn’t know about the levayah. baruch daayan emes. may hashem comfort the family, friends and colleagues.

  6. Some family members get up Tuesday, others on Wednesday (as the kevura was in E”Y). He was my father in law — a wonderful wonderful man. We are still in shock.

  7. My dear friend Chaim Weiss A”H was my neighbour and close friend. He was a most remarkable individual.A big Yerei Shomayim, medakdek bemitzvos,Oheiv veohuv labriyos.He was always a unique personality.I could speak with him about any topic Torah or secular and he was there for me.I never had a friend of this calibre before. I am not sure I will ever have a friend of this calibre again.I pray that he will be a Melitz Yosher for all Klal Yisroel.

  8. We were his clients for eight years. His mesiras nefesh for the klal was incredible. He gave us appointments at various times and truly truly cared. After a full day of work he would devote his precious time to us sometimes finishing close to eleven. He took a genuine interest in our family and showed true concern. Nobody laughed at our kids jokes like Dr Weiss did. He is sorely missed. It seems so unreal that he is gone. His trademark smile seems so alive in our minds. His passion for learning and living serves as a true inspiration!